Techno-ology: Mold Making

I was at Kootenay School of the Arts the other day, mulling around during a mold making workshop. It brought back all the memories of my NSCAD Product Design class- a.k.a. Mold Making 101. I really used to hate plaster, but after being subjected to plenty of projects I am now adept enough at making molds and see plaster as a great tool. I have many of casting projects waiting at the back of my brain… though they’ll have to wait for warmer weather. The fellow heading up the workshop the other day said “the only way to learn to make a mold is by doing it”. He is right. Just check out one of the monster demo molds that we made at NSCAD above. The thing is that most dinnerware sets in most homes are slip cast. That means there is a “mold” of anywhere from one t0 five separate pieces that fit together to make a bigger mold and liquid clay is poured into it. The plaster absorbs some water in the clay right at it surface…. creating a shell of clay lining in the mold… the rest of the clay is poured out and that form is left to dry: presto an almost complete ceramic piece! Here are some visuals to give you an idea of what goes into mold making, courts of my NSCAD class. There is one new and very well written book on molds called “Breaking the Mold” look it up if this interests you. Once you get how molds are made you’ll start to see how most of the man made things around us are made from a mold.

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